Your Money

Your summer bucket list on a budget!

Amelia Scholey, Brand and Content Specialist, Thursday, 26 May 2022
Updated: Wednesday, 7 September 2022

Summer is finally here, and we’re all desperate to get outside into the sunshine. There’s so many things to do in the summer, but sometimes we can end up spending more money than we probably should.

So what are fun things to do in the summer? Follow our summer bucket list for adults, but with some child friendly activities thrown in too, and you can make sure you enjoy your summer all whilst not breaking the bank.

1. Come dine with me BBQ edition

More or less everyone has caught at least one episode of Come Dine with Me on the TV, and whether or not you enjoy the programme, we can probably all agree the concept looks like a fun one! So why not make this one of many fun things to do this summer, and throw a come dine with me BBQ edition.

You could do it with as many or few friends as you like, and each take it in turns to throw a BBQ every week. That way you are seeing friends, but all taking it in turn to cook for one another. If you wanted to make it even more like the TV show, you could even rate each other each week and gift the winner a prize at the end. If not, then just sit back, relax and enjoy the BBQ!

A bbq in a garden

2. Garden camping date

Pop a tent up in your back garden and make a date out of it! Whether that be with friends or your partner, you can really make a night of it. You could have a BBQ, get a takeaway or just buy all your favourite foods and relax under the stars. When the sun sets you can wrap up under warm blankets, hot water bottles and hot drinks and spend the evening enjoying nature.

If you’re creative you could even decorate the inside of the tent with fairy lights or plants to make it feel that extra bit special.

Garden camping

3. Go to the beach

Another obvious summer activity is to go to the beach. But with so many beautiful beaches in the UK, we’ve probably never had the chance to visit all of them. So why not explore different beaches close to you or go further afield and start exploring.

Take a picnic, a book or beach games and enjoy the sunshine and the day. You’ll return home having had a day full of memories, whilst also having spent very little money!

sand dunes

4. Watch a film in your garden

Another fun thing to do in the summer would be to turn your garden into an open-air cinema. Have a vote with your friends and family on a film you want to watch, or just force them to watch your favourite, and watch it in your garden.

You don’t have to have a fancy projector and screen to make this idea work, just grab your laptop and an extension lead so that it doesn’t die half way through the film! Get some popcorn and your favourite snacks and enjoy the outside whilst you watch your favourite film.

a girl in a hammock

5. Go strawberry picking

Another idea for the summer months is to go strawberry picking! We all know English strawberries are the best strawberries, so why not have a fun day out at the same time and go and pick some at a local farm.

Find a local strawberry farm to you, grab some friends and pick a day when you know the sun will be shining. We’re sure you’ll have a great day!

Woman holding strawberries

6. Go on a road trip to somewhere you’ve never been

As I’m sure like many people there’s probably lots of the UK that you’ve never visited. Why not make a road trip one of the fun things you do this summer and go and explore the most beautiful parts of the UK!

There are lots of amazing routes to take that will take you along coastlines, through mountain ranges and provide you with lots of great views. Why not book a few hotels or camping grounds along the route and turn it into an adventure you’ll never forget.

a camper van on a beach

7. Visit a farmers market

Why not make one of your summer activities to visit different farmers markets in your area? The Times has listed some of the best farmers markets in the UK, but there are loads of local ones dotted up and down the country.

Search online ‘farmers markets near me’ and we bet you’ll find one under your nose you weren’t aware of. Farmers markets are great as they sell lots of fresh produce plus lots of little things you didn’t know you needed.

Farmers market

8. Do an outdoor exercise class

If you don’t have a gym membership, there’s no reason why you can’t still enjoy exercise either alone or with friends. There are lots of different outdoor gym classes or bootcamps dotted around the country that take place in local parks.

This way you can enjoy being outside in the sunshine whilst also getting those endorphins flowing. These classes are held throughout the week, so there will be multiple opportunities for you to join and tend to be cheaper than your average gym membership ranging from £5-10 for a session. The best bit though is you don’t have to sign up to a membership like you would the gym! So why not try it out once and see if it’s something you enjoy?

A group of people exercising in a park

9. Go hiking or visit a national park

There are so many national parks in the UK that most of us have probably never heard of, let alone explored. Why not take a look at the national parks close to you, or if you fancy a road trip why not make a weekend of it?

If you do decide to go on a walk in one of the beautiful national parks, then make sure you are well equipped with everything from a waterproof jacket to sun cream and a hat, as the weather can change very quickly. Wear comfortable shoes and make sure your phone is fully charged in case you get a little lost!

A family hiking

10. Rent a boat for the day and have a picnic

Whether you live by a canal, a river or the sea you can often rent boats by the hour or for the day for not too much money. This is one of the best things to do in the summer as you can go at your own pace. Sail through the water or moor up and have a picnic and simply enjoy the sunshine.

If you think of your nearest body of water, whatever that is and do a quick internet search for boat hire in that area, you’ll be surprised at how many rental places show up. This is a great activity to do with friends or your family and a perfect way to spend a summer day out.

2 people on a boat on a river
Amelia Scholey, Brand and Content Specialist
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